Do you have random rules for recycling?

Charlie Adley
Charlie Adley

Double Vision with Charlie Adley

Tucked in behind the stack of dinner dishes sits an empty bottle of fabric conditioner. Well, I say empty, but there’s half a centimetre of pink Lenor at the bottom, growing slowly as the fluff-giving liquid slides down the sides of the bottle.

If the Snapper were doing dishes tonight, she’d wash out the bottle and lid and leave them to dry on the draining board.

I pick it up, scrunch it and chuck it in the landfill bin. Then I rinse out the two empty two litre bottles of Diet Coke that were standing by the Lenor and leave them to dry.

What am I up to? Not too sure, to be honest, because matters Green fire up constant conflict in my brainbox.

I feel no confusion over my intentions towards the environment. Willing to acknowledge that my presence on this planet causes harm, I strive to create eco-ambitions that make sense to me.

For a long time a strongly cynical part of me has wondered if our Irish multi-bin systems really do any good.

I’m sure that the food waste, tea bags and egg boxes I tip onto my compost heap will return something to the plant world. Yet I wonder how much of what we recycle at home ends up crushed into a massive cube of shite, which is then loaded onto a container ship with hundreds of similar shitey cubes, sailed around the world and dumped off the coast of Bangladesh, where desperately impoverished locals try to salvage a wretched living off our waste.

I’ve always suspected there’s an element of psychological warfare behind our wheelie bins. Compared to the amount of waste created by industry and commerce, our domestic detritus feels almost insignificant, yet as long as we do our bit, we feel okay.

To read Charlie’s column in full, please see this week’s Galway City Tribune.